Thursday, April 7, 2011
Cardinals: How 2010 draft picks project
By Mike Sando
Arizona Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt has hit upon one theme consistently when discussing the possibilities for his team in 2011.
The short version: Arizona struggled in 2010, but young players gained experience that will pay off for them, and for the team, this coming season.
The longer version, directly from an interview at the NFL owners meeting last month:
"The one thing I do like is we have a lot of young football players that I believe are going to be very good football players that have now had an opportunity to play. We have struggled through those guys having to play. Now, you hope that going into the next year, those guys will be more conditioned to understanding what they have to do to be successful and that will help us."
That message came through during this 12-minute video the team produced for its website.
Some of the young players Whisenhunt referenced were rookie draft choices in 2010.
First-round choice Dan Williams finished strong and should start, provided he continues to overcome the conditioning troubles that led to a one-game benching last season. Second-rounder Daryl Washington looks like another promising starter. Andre Roberts' 74-yard touchdown reception from John Skelton against Dallas stood out as highlights for two other rookies, although the plan was not -- and is not -- for Skelton to start just yet.
The chart lists the Cardinals' 2010 draft choices based on how they could fit in 2011.